Lutheran South High to build massive performing arts center with donation – St. Louis Call Newspapers

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After a large donation from the Darren C. Jubel Charitable Foundation, Lutheran High School South in Affton now has the means to build a large new performing arts center on campus.

The donation totaled $ 6 million, including $ 2.5 million for immediate use and $ 3.5 million to be released after additional donors pledged $ 4.5 million. Director Jonathan Butterfield has said the second part of the donation is about to be released.

“Darren has always thought of Lutheran South with affection and truly enjoyed his time as a student there,” said Melissa Markwort, Jubel’s niece and executive director of the foundation. “School meant a lot to him, and we believe this gift of challenge will enhance the phenomenal performing arts programs and programs the school has to offer.”

The expansion is approximately 39,000 square feet and will include areas for several classes and programs. Butterfield said it could be ready for use by fall 2023. The largest room is a 622-seat performing arts theater with a functional stage – the area will also serve as a chapel for worship at the school scale.

“When we first sat down with the architect, we said our top priority was to have space to house a chapel,” Butterfield said. “For us, as a Christian Lutheran school, worship space is essential… that’s who we are.

In addition, the orchestra and choir will have new musical rehearsal rooms and will use the theater for performances. Apart from performance programs, the new building will have a studio for the school’s digital journalism program, where students will host a weekly live news program.

“What we really appreciate about school is the kids getting involved in activities outside of the school day,” Butterfield said. “The more children participate in extracurricular activities at school, the better their overall high school experience will be.”

Currently, all of these programs use more general classrooms or gymnasiums throughout the school and do not have a specific area of ​​their own. The school currently uses the main gymnasium for its chapel.

Butterfield said the school had made several attempts to build something like this over the years, but never had the funding or the opportunity to make it happen.

“This gift has certainly opened up the fact that it can become a reality because it’s such a transformational gift,” Butterfield said. “I don’t think it could have been a reality in the past without such an important gift.”


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